Today, we’re celebrating the grand opening of Pixar Place Hotel at the Disneyland Resort, the first fully Pixar-themed hotel in the United States! Inspired by the artistry and innovative storytelling of Pixar Animation Studios, the 479-room hotel is filled with nods to beloved films from “Toy Story” to “Ratatouille” and “Elemental.” In fact, there is a nod to every Pixar feature film to date!
At Pixar Place Hotel, you’ll see so many familiar Pixar friends brought to life in a whole new way, through various styles of playful artwork, contemporary decor and even surprise visits!
Special Guests & Pixar Characters Join Grand Opening Dedication
Ka-chow! Lightning McQueen, Mater and more Pixar pals made a special visit to celebrate the hotel’s opening day dedication alongside Disneyland Resort President Ken Potrock and Pixar Animation Studios Chief Creative Officer Pete Docter.
“We are looking to turbocharge expansion at Disneyland Resort over the coming years, and the transformation of Pixar Place Hotel is a demonstration of how we’re creating high-quality guest experiences infused with our most popular stories,” said Potrock.
Docter, who is the Oscar-winning director of “Monsters, Inc.,” “Up” and “Inside Out,” spoke to the creative collaboration between Pixar Animation Studios and Walt Disney Imagineering, who together bring so many favorite stories to life in Disney parks.
“At Pixar, our mission is to tell great stories. And nothing is more exciting than when we see those stories come to life in Disney parks. Pixar Place Hotel at the Disneyland Resort is the perfect example – it’s like walking into a world of Pixar. It’s truly immersive, and we’re thrilled to have collaborated with Walt Disney Imagineering to make such an experience possible for guests.”
And speaking of stories coming to life …
Pixar Place Hotel Welcomes New Characters
Who’s your friend who likes to play? It’s Bing Bong from “Inside Out,” making his worldwide debut, as this is the first time he is being seen at any Disney property! This part-cat, part-elephant, part-dolphin imaginary friend is greeting guests and making more core memories at Pixar Place Hotel, beginning today!
And is that … piano music I hear? All the way from The Half Note Jazz Club, it’s Joe Gardner from “Soul!” You may find Joe getting lost in the music as he plays piano near the hotel lobby staircase. In this alcove, the ethereal artistry of “Soul” creates a mood with deep purple walls and drawings of jazz musicians and counselors from “The Great Before,” with Joe dropping in on occasion to play piano for passersby.
Pixar-Themed Spaces You Can Enjoy Now, Plus More Pixar Touches To Come
There are so many sights to see at Pixar Place Hotel, so let’s explore the new areas!
The iconic Pixar Ball and Lamp now welcomes guests at the front lobby entrance, with an abstract mobile of Pixar characters floating from the skylight above. You may even catch a glimpse of Carl and Ellie’s house from “Up” as it travels up and down the lobby elevator.
The lobby is a vibrant, colorful blend of different art galleries. Seven giant portraits of Pixar characters surround the front desk including Sulley from “Monsters, Inc.” and Merida from “Brave.” These portraits depict characters at pivotal moments in their journeys when they are discovering their world or a piece of who they are for the very first time. Nearby, you’ll also see maquettes of Elastigirl from “The Incredibles,” Flik from “a bug’s life” and more!
You may even hear new music specially composed for Pixar Place Hotel! Celebrating favorite themes from many Pixar films, 10 new arrangements of Pixar cues can be heard in the hotel lobby and the album is available now digitally for you to listen to!
The rear entrance of the hotel is inspired by the stages of character design development, as artists bring ideas from pencil and paper illustrations to something built in the computer. In this part of the hotel, you’ll see animator thumbnail sketches and lit wireframes of Buzz Lightyear from “Toy Story,” Edna Mode from “The Incredibles” and others in action poses.
Throughout the lobby and elevator cab flooring, there are 16 silhouettes of Pixar friends randomly embedded in the porcelain tiles, which is a nod to the flooring details found at Pixar Animation Studios in Emeryville, Calif. See if you can spot them all!
Next, let’s visit Great Maple! This flagship restaurant and modern American eatery serves an all-day menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner using the highest quality seasonal ingredients. As you delve into any of the amazing dishes — like my favorite Buttermilk Fried Chicken and Maple Bacon Donuts — take in the sophisticated ambiance of gorgeous green leather seating, a beautiful bar area and seamless transition to an open-air patio. The black and white portraits of Pixar characters seen throughout the space were originally created for the Pixar offices in Emeryville, Calif., and this is the first time they are being publicly displayed! What’s more, the food and beverage offerings throughout the hotel are all operated by Great Maple.
Just off the lobby, The Sketch Pad Café serves assorted pastries, sandwiches, grab-n-go items and offers a full espresso bar. It’s a great spot to stop on your way to a fun-filled day in the parks, although you may want to sit and stay a while in this fun space. Along the cafe walls is a timeline of Pixar films conveyed through character design and early concept art from Buzz Lightyear, a star of the studio’s first feature film, “Toy Story,” to Mei Lee from “Turning Red.”
Now, let’s head to the third-floor rooftop deck, where Pixar touches abound! At the new Pixar Shorts Court, the whole family can play games inspired by the animation studio’s iconic shorts “Bao,” “For The Birds,” “La Luna” and “Burrow.” You can even lounge and enjoy a bite to eat beneath umbrellas from “The Blue Umbrella.”
Opening adjacent to the Pixar Shorts Court in early March, Small Bytes will serve up inventive floats and tasty “bytes,” such as ceviche, soft pretzels and nachos, and will be open to non-hotel guests. While you’re noshing, be sure to see the pixel-art style portraits of 22 Pixar characters, created expressly for Pixar Place Hotel! I spy Lightning McQueen from “Cars” and Remy from “Ratatouille.”
As the sun begins to set on a great day, cozy up by the firepits (cleverly reminiscent of some hotheaded Pixar characters), enjoy drinks and appetizers, and watch the fireworks of Disneyland park light up the sky on select evenings.
At the pool area, hotel guests can frolic on a “Finding Nemo”-themed splash pad at Nemo’s Cove, take a ride on Crush’s Surfin’ Slide and splash in Pixel Pool. Guests may choose to rent private daybeds, cabanas and pods to lounge the day away in comfort and style.
As we make our way to the guest rooms, let’s take a peek at some of the art you’ll find along the way. Each floor of the 15-story hotel displays a mural outside of the elevator banks giving an homage to a different Pixar film, from “Finding Nemo” to “Cars.”
Now, to the guest rooms! From the headboards featuring concept art from feature films to the accent pillows with a Pixar Ball motif, there are Pixar touches to be found all around. For a more in-depth look at the guest rooms, take a look at this tour from Walt Disney Imagineering art director Kirstin Makela!
And there’s more! Pixar Place Hotel also has a fitness center where guests can see a mural of Mike and Sulley from “Monsters University” on treadmills and the STOR-E retail shop offers more unique art, Pixar apparel and toys, and Disneyland Resort souvenirs and sundries. To see more photos and fun details of these spaces, check out our previous story on the Disney Parks Blog.
Later this year, the hotel will offer its new lounge, the Creators Club, to its concierge level guests. This lounge will showcase the collaboration between Disney Imagineering and Pixar Animation Studios, featuring concept art, maquettes and attraction posters. I love the repurposed light fixtures from the former “a bug’s land” and a snake ride vehicle from Jessie’s Critter Carousel in Disney California Adventure park. Adorable! Here, concierge level guests will be invited to enjoy snacks and beverages throughout the day, and a dedicated concierge may assist with any requests during their visit.
Additionally, two new 2-bedroom themed signature suites will be available for arrivals later in 2024. The Coco Suite will pay tribute to Miguel and his family’s legacy through vibrant Oaxacan art, and the Incredibles Suite will have a midcentury design with a “spy-fy” twist, complete with Parr family memorabilia.
Guests staying at any of the Hotels of the Disneyland Resort can enjoy benefits such as hotel guest activities and early entry 30 minutes prior to regular theme park opening into a designated park to enjoy select attractions, dining and shopping locations.* Plus, guests of Pixar Place Hotel can enjoy a convenient, dedicated entrance to Disney California Adventure park just a short walk away.
We can’t wait to welcome you to Pixar Place Hotel on your next visit to the Disneyland Resort! This is just the beginning of a wonderful journey. “To infinity … and beyond!”
*Each day a designated Theme Park will be open early. Each registered hotel guest (age 3 and older) must have valid park admission, park reservation, and hotel room key card for early entry park admission. Applicable theme park, days and times of operation, and attractions, experiences, and offerings for the early entry benefit may vary, be subject to availability, capacity, change and cancellation without notice, and are not guaranteed. Both Theme Park admission and park reservation for Disney California Adventure park are required for park entry at the special entrance for Pixar Place Hotel guests, and a hotel reservation does not guarantee theme park access.